Brewed by Duyck
Style: Bière de Garde
Jenlain, France
Serve in Stem glass, Tulip


on tap


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RATINGS: 234   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.18/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 204   ABV: 6.8%
The festive season just wouldn’t be the same without this speciality beer whose arrival is always long-awaited. The tradition of Christmas beers is particular to northern Europe. In the years following the Second World War, the breweries used to sell an original, richer and stronger beer at the same price as year-round beers: this was their gift to their customers. The Duycks have perpetuated this custom by creating a special beer sold at the usual price. Produced with more malt than Jenlain Ambrée (3 different types of malt made from French grown barley and 3 varieties of the most aromatic hops from Alsace), this top fermented, unpasteurized beer, best served at between 6 and 8°C, has a rich amber glow, a denser head and stronger alcohol content (6.8% alcohol by volume). Darker than the traditional amber beer, its torrefied undertones are reminiscent of flowers and caramel. And the 2002 Christmas beer had a hint of orange.

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BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - JAN 14, 2006
I had a nicely worded commentary about this beer but the server logged me off and I lost it. WTF it was only a few minutes since I brought up this screen. I am pissed off right now.

Anyway, this bottle is over a year old and was a complete surprise. It was soft and smooth, yet kept me interested till the last drop. Sadly this review does not do the experiance justice and I am too angry to rewrite it since the beer is now gone.

Oh it posted now, damn it!

luckygirl (1223) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JAN 13, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 20, 2006 Had this at BJ’s Winter Ale Fest. Beer poured a clear, medium-amber color with an average-sized, fizzy, off-white, mostly diminishing head. The aroma was pretty darn off. Behind the light malty notes of sweet molasses and hoppy notes of pine, there’s an overpoweringly unclean, distracting aroma of tin can. Can’t really get past that one. The flavor is lightly acidic and lightly bitter with a short, lightly bitter finish. The body is medium, the texture is watery, the carbonation is fizzy and the finish is lightly metallic and unclean. I don’t know if this is a bad bottle—I’ll check it out again when I get a chance to make sure this wasn’t just bad luck.

Epor (13) - FINLAND - JAN 11, 2006
Bottle (750 ml). A kind of a taffy colour, thick head. Spicy, fruity, cellar flavour, but kind of thin, not bad but not especially good either.

beervana (781) - Libertyville, Illinois, USA - JAN 4, 2006
One pint, 9.4 fl oz (750 mL) brown bottle purchased from Di Carlo Wine and Spirits (formerly Armanetti’s), Mundelein, IL. 6.8% ABV. 2005 vintage. Clear red amber ale having a small diminishing white head with space lacing. No discernable carbonation. Nice spicy orange zest aromas. Medium bodied that starts with light malt sweetness and spicy, orange flavors. Finishes with pleasant light malt aftertaste. I thought this was a Belgium beer but it’s French – oh la la! An outstanding drinkable winter brew. Loved the spicy orange aroma and flavor. Sampled on 2005 Christmas day with visiting family members who unanimously gave it a “two-thumbs” up.

turbo (1271) - Arizona, USA - DEC 31, 2005
Bottle poured a dark caramel with a nice thick head. Aroma is yeast and citrus with a spice, citrus and caramel. Smokey, burnt wood flavor on the finish.

Bockyhorsey (2628) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - DEC 29, 2005
Had a musty bar/basement aroma. Caramel color body with thin head. Flavor was mostly spice driven but not bad. Wet wood and roasted aftertaste that was decent. Good Brew variety of things in this one.

thedm (6143) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - DEC 26, 2005
This corked and caged bottled brew poured a very large sized head of foamy fine to medium sized mostly lasting light brown colored bubbles that left behind a fair lacing. The body contained soft carbonation, was transparent and caramel brown in color. Its aroma contained notes of mild caramel malt. Its mouth feel is smooth with a slightly tingly mellow palate and a mild caramel malt aftertaste. Its flavor was malty with a mild caramel malt note. An above average brew.

NYHarvey (2153) - New York, New York, USA - DEC 26, 2005
Aroma is slightly musty, sour. orange, brown in color with a thick bubbly tan head. Flavor is honey, orange and malt. Very still and lacks any sort of bite. Almost tastes like a low alcohol mead though slightly less still than a mead would be. I think more spice and hops are in order here just to give it an edge to this fat round flavor.

sunevdj (4084) - Copenhagen OE, DENMARK - DEC 18, 2005
Pours brown with a tanned head. Sweet an very perfumed. Aromas of lots of orange, spices, caramel and a hint of chocolate. The orange aroma doesn´t go well with the other aromas. Dry finish. Too perfumed, too much orange.

AlchemistZ (493) - Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA - DEC 16, 2005
NOUVEAU GOUT. Dark red in color, rich with a tight-bubbled, tan, sustained head. Aroma is intense with tangerines and candied apple, sweet, and a touch of chocolate. Flavor is same as the aroma. Simple, straightforward, good development of intense flavors (to the point of almost being overwhelming) on the palate, lush for such a low alcohol beer, and pretty unique. Just a right amount of bitterness hits late in the profile to finish the beer.

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